MALCOLM X SEEKS U.N. NEGRO DEBATE
By M. S. HANDLER; Special to The New York Times
August 13, 1964
WASHINGTON, Aug. 12 —The State Department and the Justice Department have begun to take an interest in Malcolm X’s campaign to convince African states to raise the question of persecution of American Negroes at the United Nations.
The Black Nationalist leader started his campaign July 17 in Cairo, where the 33 heads of independent African states held their second meeting since the Organization of African Unity was founded in Addis Ababa 14 months ago.
Before leaving for Cairo, Malcolm told friends in New York that it was his intention to add a new dimension to the civil rights struggle in the United States. This, he said, could be achieved by “internationalizing” the Negro question at the United Nations in the manner that South African apartheid was transferred into an international problem.
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Malcolm’s eight‐page memorandum to the heads of state at the Cairo conference requesting their support became available here only recently. After studying it, officials said that if Malcolm succeeded in convincing just one African Government to bring up the charge at the United Nations, the United States Government would be faced with a touchy problem.
The United States officials here believe, would find itself in the same category as South Africa, Hungary and other countries whose domestic politics
In a letter from Cairo to a [friend Malcolm wrote:
“I have gotten several promUses of support in bringing our| plight before the U. N. this year.”
According to one diplomatic report, Malcolm had not met with success, but the report was not documented and officials’ here today conceded the possibility that Malcolm might have succeeded.
Passages in Malcolm’s memorandum indicated that he had encountered resistance to his idea.
“Some African leaders at this conference,” he said in his memorandum, “have implied that they have enough problems here on the mother continent without adding the Afro‐American problem.
“With all due respect to your esteemed positions, I must remind all of you that the good shepherd will leave 99 sheep at home to go to the aid of the one who is lost and has fallen into the hands of the imperialist wolf.
“We, in America, are your long lost brothers and sisters, and I am here to remind you that our problems are your problems.” The memorandum continued:
“The American Government is either unable or unwilling to protect the lives and property of your 22 million AfricanAmerican brothers and sisters. We stand defenseless, at the mercy of American racists who murder us at will for no reason other than we are black and of African descent.
“Our problems are your problems. We have lived for over
Malcolm also warned the heads of the African states that their countries would have no future unless the American Negro problem was solved. He said:
“Your problems will never be fully solved until and unless ours are solved. You will never be fully respected until and unless we are also respected. You will never be recognized as free human beings until and unless we are also recognized and treated as human beings.”
Asstering that the Negro problem is not one of civil rights but of human rights, Malcolm said:
“If United States Supreme Court Justice Arthur Goldberg a few weeks ago, could find legal grounds to threaten to bring Russia before the United Nations and charge her with violating the human rights of less than three million Russian Jews—what makes our African brothers hesitate to bring the United States Government before the United Nations and charge her with violating the human rights of 22 million African‐Americans ?
“We pray that our African brothers have not freed themselves of European colonialism only to be overcome and held in check by American dollarism. Don’t let American racism be ’legalized’ by American dollarism.”
Malcolm argued that “if South African racism is not a domestic issue, then American racism also is not a domestic issue.”
The Black Nationalist, who quit the Chicago‐based Black Muslim movement led by Elijah Muhammad to form his nonsectarian Organization of AfriAmerican Unity, said it was the intention of his group in coalition with other Negro groups ”to elevate our freedom struggle above the domestic level of civil rights.”
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